On Tuesday April 3rd the second programme in the BBC series “Hospital” followed some head and neck cancer patients at QMC, Nottingham. It certainly provoked a mixture of emotions. The problems faced by the head and neck team because of shortages of specialist staff have alarming implications for patients. Targets are set for timely treatment with good reason given the prospect for less favourable outcomes if delays occur. On the other hand, one could not fail to be moved by the dedication and work of staff to do the best they could in the challenging circumstances.
QMC has had an excellent reputation in head and neck, with world-renowned clinicians such as Emeritus Professor Patrick Bradley, who was a former NALC patron, Some of our members receive their care at QMC and it continues to have a high reputation. Indeed the trust has extended some services to all of us regardless of some being “out of area”.
NHS staff such as the head and neck team at QMC are being let down. They are not able to deliver the service they want to provide, and which they were able to do a few years ago.